(A version of this post appears on the Philanthropy 411 blog.)
Guest Post: Lora Smith
At its very core, policy advocacy is an exercise in strategic communications. To succeed at influencing policy, advocacy organizations need to be able to persuade decision makers why change is in the public’s best interest.
Yet, as a new report from the Mary Reynolds Babcock Foundation shows, many nonprofit advocacy organizations lack sufficient communications capacity to create and deliver messages that are key to successfully influencing policy changes.
Guest Post: Bruce S. Trachtenberg
I recently sat in on a Philanthropy New York panel discussion that asked a very simple question, “Why do foundations choose to go on forever?”
That question, which was prompted by attention being paid to the recent uptick in the number of foundations that intend to spend themselves out of business, got me thinking.
When a foundation makes the decision to close down, that’s considered news. But what about foundations that plan to keep going forever, don’t they have some obligation to publicly explain why?
Guest Post: Ryan Reynolds
Indexes are handy ways to track and report progress. You can’t beat the Dow Jones Industrial Index to follow the ups and downs of stock prices. Ditto the Consumer Price Index, which compares the cost of goods and services from year to year.
But what if you want to track progress on important social issues? Thanks to troves of data available these days, nonprofits are increasingly using indexes to communicate about their work and their underlying causes.
Infographics took over the Internet in 2013. Indeed, they are a great way to crystallize the findings from a lengthy report into a single clear visual with just the top highlights of data, comparisons, etc. But, too often organizations spend money hiring designers to do infographics that are too complex, get lost in the data, miss the forest for the trees, or because of other misguided approaches, lower trust in infographics across the board.
During a recent Communications Network webinar, Resource Media’s Liz Banse and Nicole Lampe shared seven best practices around the use of infographics, They also presented two case studies of successful infographic releases.